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November 27, 2021 10:47 am

Iran Police Fire Tear Gas at Water Protesters in Isfahan

avatar by i24 News

An Iranian flag is pictured near in a missile during a military drill, with the participation of Iran’s Air Defense units, Iran October 19, 2020. Photo: WANA (West Asia News Agency) via REUTERS/Files

i24 News – Iranian security forces fired tear gas as demonstrators threw stones and torched a police motorbike Friday in the city of Isfahan in protest at water shortages, the semi-official Fars news agency said.

Some 500 people gathered in the dry bed of the Zayadneh Rood river that crosses the central city.

Drought is seen as a cause of the river’s woes, but farmers also blame the authorities’ diversion of water to neighboring Yazd province.

A Fars journalist said two bulldozers were used to destroy a pipeline taking water from Isfahan province to Yazd.

Police fired tear gas while demonstrators threw stones in streets near the riverbed.

Some protesters smashed the windows of an ambulance and set fire to a police motorbike and trees, Fars said.

Another news agency, ISNA, said farmers and authorities struck an agreement Thursday on the distribution of 50 million cubic meters (over 1.6 billion cubic feet) of water.

Despite the deal, it said hundreds of people gathered early Friday in the riverbed following a call on social media by “suspect and counter-revolutionary elements”, and clashes ensued.

Protests take place almost daily in Isfahan, a region hard-hit by draught.

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